Commit myself more
It’s quite easy to say that “I’m going to commit to being more active”, but actually achieving that is something quite different! It can be a strange concept to think about being more committed as you have some level of commitment by completing this behavioural assessment but there are things that can focus your mind on and keep that commitment going. The more you do something, the more you enjoy it and the more you accept it into your daily or weekly routine. Once it’s accepted into your routine, the less commitment is needed as it becomes more of an internal drive than requiring you to ‘get yourself up’ for doing some activity. It becomes a natural part of your life. That’s the commitment needed, to make some big changes in your life in the short term which will seem so small in the long term; the commitment to do things but also to give things up or do them differently if required; the commitment to put your needs first in some cases. You can succeed by putting in a bit of effort, but the more committed you are, the more likely you are to achieve.
There are many things that can effect your commitment to change your behaviour, some negative but some positive. If you understand what makes you tick, you can do things to help keep your commitment up to make that behaviour change a long term habit.
Understand your Motivations
If you know what is motivating you to be more active, improved health, losing weight or to maintain mobility and independence, you can use that when you feel your commitment dropping off. Have people and things around you to remind you of these motivations to keep that commitment level up. Have these as a focus to turn to and try to avoid things that may sway this. You may be motivated by personal challenges, in which case, sign up to an event where you have be active to train up for it, such as a Race for Life or a Wolf Run.
Your commitment can waver over time and also at different points in time. If you prepare for these dips you can hopefully overcome them. This could be putting plans in place if you fall off the wagon to help get back on (as this may well happen and is absolutely fine but you do need to get back to it as soon as possible) or more specifically if you struggle to do activity in the morning or after school. You can make plans ahead of time to organise your week. You can minimise the commitment required to go out for walk/run by getting your kit ready at another time and planning ahead to make it as easy as possible. The more preparation that is put in place, the easier it is to get out and be active and once you’re out of the door/in the room, that’s the hardest part done!
To help your commitment levels, give yourself goals and rewards. And the best rewards are those that link to social interactions rather than material gain. Adding activity with friends and family encourages you to continue activity because it’s more enjoyable with others but the feeling of letting them down is another strong way to remain committed and continue to be active. If you like to go to a cafe or lunch with friends (and we all like cake!), do your activity first to feel like you’ve earned your treat and having that mindset will help to link to nice rewards with being active (and hopefully not to eat lots more cake!).